How to check if your yeast is still alive and good for baking with


Is Your Yeast
Still Alive?

Takes 10 minutes to check

Occasionally, I’ll get asked for help about dough that didn’t rise. 99% of the time, it’s because of instant or fresh yeast isn’t active or alive anymore!

Checking if your yeast is still good takes just 10 minutes, and guarantees that your bakes will rise as it should.

What you’ll need

  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp instant yeast (or 1 tbsp fresh yeast)

If you live in a warm climate, you can use room temperature water. If you will be boiling water to warm it, make sure it cools to 37°C / 100°F or below. Water 48°C / 120°F and above will kill the yeast.

Testing your yeast

Step 1: Dissolve sugar in water. Add yeast and stir to dissolve.

Step 2: Leave your yeast for 10 minutes. If the mixture rises to double or triple in size, then your yeast is active! Go ahead and bake with confidence!

If your mixture does not rise much or stays at the same volume, then your yeast is no longer active. You’ll have to throw it out, and get yourself a new batch.

Storing yeast

Storing your yeast correctly will prolong its life and allow it to perform its best.

Instant yeast and active dry yeast has a shelf life of two years and is best when protected from heat and moisture. After opening, seal your yeast in its original packaging in an airtight container and store it in the fridge or freezer.

Fresh yeast has a shorter shelf-life. It lasts around 2 weeks in the fridge and should not be frozen.

This is from my can of instant yeast that was opened a year ago. I store it in a sealed zip-loc bag in the fridge.

If you found this helpful
or have any questions,
please drop me a note below!

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